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Removal instructions for SearchSpace

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#1
Metallica

Metallica

    Spyware Veteran

  • GeekU Moderator
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Content is republished with permission from Malwarebytes.

What is SearchSpace?

The Malwarebytes research team has determined that SearchSpace is a search hijacker. These so-called "hijackers" manipulate your browser(s), for example to change your startpage or searchscopes, so that the affected browser visits their site or one of their choice.
This particular one changes Chrome poilcies to hinder removal.

managed1.png
Managed by your organization

How do I know if my computer is affected by SearchSpace?

You may see this entry in your list of installed Chrome extensions:

main.png

this icon in the Chrome menu-bar:

icons.png

with this description:

details.png

this changed setting:

warning5.png

You may have noticed these warnings during install:

warning1.png

warning3.png

How did SearchSpace get on my computer?

Browser hijackers use different methods for distributing themselves. This particular one was installed by a bundler.

How do I remove SearchSpace?

Our program Malwarebytes can detect and remove this potentially unwanted program.
  • Please download Malwarebytes for Windows to your desktop.
  • Double-click MBSetup.exe and follow the prompts to install the program.
  • When your Malwarebytes for Windows installation completes, the program opens to the Welcome to Malwarebytes screen.
  • Click on the Get started button.
  • Click Scan to start a Threat Scan.
  • When the scan is finished click Quarantine to remove the found threats.
  • Reboot the system if prompted to complete the removal process.
Is there anything else I need to do to get rid of SearchSpace?
  • No, Malwarebytes removes SearchSpace completely.
How would the full version of Malwarebytes help protect me?

We hope our application and this guide have helped you eradicate this hijacker.

As you can see below the full version of Malwarebytes would have protected you against the SearchSpace adware. It would have blocked the installer before it became too late.

protection1.png


Technical details for experts

Possible signs in FRST logs:

CHR HKLM\SOFTWARE\Policies\Google: Restriction <==== ATTENTION
CHR DefaultSearchURL: Default -> hxxps://search-space.net/?q={searchTerms}
CHR DefaultSearchKeyword: Default -> search.search-space.search
CHR Extension: (search space) - C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Extensions\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna [2020-06-04]
Alterations made by the installer:

File system details [View: All details] (Selection)
---------------------------------------------------
    Adds the folder C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Extensions\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\1.3_0
       Adds the file manifest.json"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 1468 bytes, A
    Adds the folder C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Extensions\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\1.3_0\_metadata
       Adds the file computed_hashes.json"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 3373 bytes, A
       Adds the file verified_contents.json"="3/28/2020 10:20 AM, 2071 bytes, A
    Adds the folder C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Extensions\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\1.3_0\img
       Adds the file 128.png"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 5353 bytes, A
       Adds the file 16.png"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 628 bytes, A
       Adds the file 32.png"="3/27/2020 9:04 PM, 1112 bytes, A
       Adds the file 48.png"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 1389 bytes, A
       Adds the file 64.png"="3/27/2020 9:04 PM, 2565 bytes, A
    Adds the folder C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Extensions\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\1.3_0\js
       Adds the file background.js"="3/27/2020 11:26 PM, 3298 bytes, A
       Adds the file jquery-2.2.4.js"="3/27/2020 8:37 PM, 257286 bytes, A
    Adds the folder C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Local Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna
       Adds the file 000003.log"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 61 bytes, A
       Adds the file CURRENT"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 16 bytes, A
       Adds the file LOCK"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 0 bytes, A
       Adds the file LOG"="6/4/2020 9:09 AM, 185 bytes, A
       Adds the file MANIFEST-000001"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 41 bytes, A
    Adds the folder C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Sync Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna
       Adds the file 000003.log"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 51 bytes, A
       Adds the file CURRENT"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 16 bytes, A
       Adds the file LOCK"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 0 bytes, A
       Adds the file LOG"="6/4/2020 9:09 AM, 184 bytes, A
       Adds the file MANIFEST-000001"="6/4/2020 9:02 AM, 41 bytes, A

Registry details [View: All details] (Selection)
------------------------------------------------
    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Chromium\ExtensionInstallForcelist]
       "1"="REG_SZ", "lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna;https://clients2.google.com/service/update2/crx"
    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Google\Chrome\ExtensionInstallForcelist]
       "1"="REG_SZ", "lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna;https://clients2.google.com/service/update2/crx"
    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Google\Chrome\PreferenceMACs\Default\extensions.settings]
       "lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna"="REG_SZ", "6CCD552FBBB961C3253701C97EDFE2822765BB4E39717742B1FEA4E840CCA4BE"
Malwarebytes log:

Malwarebytes
www.malwarebytes.com

-Log Details-
Scan Date: 6/4/20
Scan Time: 9:19 AM
Log File: b6720f3e-a633-11ea-8b20-00ffdcc6fdfc.json

-Software Information-
Version: 4.1.0.56
Components Version: 1.0.931
Update Package Version: 1.0.24988
License: Premium

-System Information-
OS: Windows 7 Service Pack 1
CPU: x64
File System: NTFS
User: {computername}\{username}

-Scan Summary-
Scan Type: Threat Scan
Scan Initiated By: Manual
Result: Completed
Objects Scanned: 232517
Threats Detected: 24
Threats Quarantined: 24
Time Elapsed: 2 min, 33 sec

-Scan Options-
Memory: Enabled
Startup: Enabled
Filesystem: Enabled
Archives: Enabled
Rootkits: Disabled
Heuristics: Enabled
PUP: Detect
PUM: Detect

-Scan Details-
Process: 0
(No malicious items detected)

Module: 0
(No malicious items detected)

Registry Key: 4
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, HKLM\SOFTWARE\POLICIES\GOOGLE\CHROME, Quarantined, 2292, -1, 0.0.0, , action, 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, HKLM\SOFTWARE\WOW6432NODE\POLICIES\GOOGLE\CHROME, Quarantined, 2292, -1, 0.0.0, , action, 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, HKLM\SOFTWARE\POLICIES\CHROMIUM, Quarantined, 2292, -1, 0.0.0, , action, 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, HKLM\SOFTWARE\WOW6432NODE\POLICIES\CHROMIUM, Quarantined, 2292, -1, 0.0.0, , action, 

Registry Value: 3
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, HKLM\SOFTWARE\POLICIES\GOOGLE\CHROME\ExtensionInstallForcelist|1, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, HKLM\SOFTWARE\WOW6432NODE\POLICIES\GOOGLE\CHROME\ExtensionInstallForcelist|1, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, HKCU\SOFTWARE\GOOGLE\CHROME\PREFERENCEMACS\Default\extensions.settings|lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 

Registry Data: 0
(No malicious items detected)

Data Stream: 0
(No malicious items detected)

Folder: 3
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\GOOGLE\CHROME\USER DATA\Default\Local Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\GOOGLE\CHROME\USER DATA\Default\Sync Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\GOOGLE\CHROME\USER DATA\Default\EXTENSIONS\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, 1.0.24988, , ame, 

File: 14
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\GOOGLE\CHROME\USER DATA\Default\Secure Preferences, Replaced, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\GOOGLE\CHROME\USER DATA\Default\Preferences, Replaced, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Local Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\000003.log, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Local Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\CURRENT, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Local Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\LOCK, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Local Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\LOG, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Local Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\MANIFEST-000001, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Sync Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\000003.log, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Sync Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\CURRENT, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Sync Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\LOCK, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Sync Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\LOG, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension.ChrPRST, C:\Users\{username}\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Sync Extension Settings\lpfpbajbnhddlpljjnfndngbkkfkjfna\MANIFEST-000001, Quarantined, 2292, 827464, , , , 
PUP.Optional.SearchEngineHijack.Generic, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\GOOGLE\CHROME\USER DATA\DEFAULT\EXTENSIONS\LPFPBAJBNHDDLPLJJNFNDNGBKKFKJFNA\1.3_0\MANIFEST.JSON, Quarantined, 15186, 822525, 1.0.24988, , ame, 
PUP.Optional.ForcedExtension, C:\USERS\{username}\APPDATA\LOCAL\GOOGLE\CHROME\USER DATA\Default\Secure Preferences, Replaced, 333, 822034, 1.0.24988, , ame, 

Physical Sector: 0
(No malicious items detected)

WMI: 0
(No malicious items detected)


(end)
As mentioned before the full version of Malwarebytes could have protected your computer against this threat.
We use different ways of protecting your computer(s):
  • Dynamically Blocks Malware Sites & Servers
  • Malware Execution Prevention
Save yourself the hassle and get protected.
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